Get Your Mac's Dock Show You Running Apps: Quick Guide

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Category: Guides

In this article, we want to tell you about some good Terminal hack which will make your work on Mac more smoothly and convenient, and namely – how to show running in the background apps. This hack turns the Dock into kind of straightforward app switcher and it displays just those apps which are now running on your device. So how to turn your Mac into a high-speed device?

Background Apps

Having all active apps at the bottom of Mac desktop is not only convenient but can also be a refreshing change if your Mac has become cluttered with different cookies, cache files, app shortcuts and other things and it happens all the time. You can always use the key combination Command-Space for activating Spotlight or check out alternative methods of launching apps on your Mac.

The terminal is a quite powerful app for making commands do it properly (especially if you have no experience). So, you need to:

  1. Click on the Terminal app (you can find the icon in Apps > Utilities). If you want to open Utilities quickly, open Finder and press Go > Utilities on the menu or make the command Shift-Command-U
  2. Type the command defaults write static-only -bool true; killall Dock and press Enter
  3. Reboot the device to show the apps currently running on your Mac

Dock Management

If you do not like the change and want to get the Dock back to the original state, you should follow these steps:

  1. Open Terminal app
  2. Type the command defaults write static-only -bool false; killall Dock and press Enter
  3. Reboot the Dock to show both running apps and non-running ones
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In case you have one specific app which you want to hide from your Dock for any reason, there are a few simple ways to do it. Dock Dodger for Mac is free and may hide needed apps even if they are currently running in the background. If money is not a problem, you may also consider GhostTile as a more recent and pretty reliable paid service with the same functions.

Have you already tried to show or hide apps from the Dock? For many people, this is a difficult task and they believe this is impossible for Mac if you do not want your speed to slow down. We believe it is a myth, and do you have other Mac myths to know?